Tonight was one of those Keyhole Astronomy sessions, where you observe through the gaps in between slowly moving banks of cloud.  While this wasn’t a problem, the 77% illuminated Moon was!

I’m still struggling to complete the remaining items in Sagittarius (M69 and M70)  as these are all pretty much on the horizon when I’m able to observe them.  There was a little low murk above the horizon, but this seemed magnified by the effects of Moonlight and made observing anything below about 30 degrees pointless especially those last remaining galaxies which were there to be bagged.

Session Data

  • Date: 16/08/2013
  • Time: 22:43 – 23:45 UT
  • Temp: 13.3c,
  • Air Pressure: 1011Mb,
  • Humidity: 99%,
  • Dew point: 13.2c,
  • Wind Speed: 4.0 MPH .
  • Seeing: I Perfectly  Stable,
  • Transparency: Somewhat Clear.


While I have seem M13 many times, this was the first with the new Televue eyepieces. The effects of Moonlight really seem to change the characteristics of M13 considerably and this session it really looked very spindly  and untidy compared with other observations.

In the Altair Astro 250mm, Delos 14mm, 145 X, 29.8′  West is to the 10 o’clock. When first observed it looks like a four legged starfish, but avert your vision and the core area really pings back into a circular ball and brightens up like the light has just been turned on. The overall view is of a faint, hazy ball shape, with a scattering of bright sparkly gems overlaid on top.

Filling about a 1/3 of of the FOV of the Altair Astro 250mm, Delos 14mm, 145 X, 29.8′. While Sand was looking through the scope a Satellite flew through the FOV going in a 2 o’clock to 8 o’clock direction.

While Sand is not as the scope, she is seeing meteors. During this session one flew NE to SW, which more than likely would have been one of the Perseid remnants

Looking more carefully the cluster now takes on the look of a four legged spider moving towards the 10 o’clock position with two legs arching out in front and the other two arching backwards to the 4 o’clock. The whole overall shape is slightly oval in outline.


West is to the 7 o’clock. In the Altair Astro 250mm, Delos 14mm, 145 X, 29.8′, the globular looks a lot smaller than M13 we were just looking at. I can’t make out any detail around the core working outwards to the outer edge of the  cluster. Illumination  seems to be pretty evenly distributed. However at the 8 o’clock there appears to be two strands of stars just protruding from the cluster body and this makes the whole object look like a very short comet  ( or a baby Sputnik) running with its head pointing to the 2 o’clock. All this is only seen with averted vision.  In these conditions, M30 us quite unremarkable 🙁


Not much to say except  ‘Absolutely rubbish’ again, the Moon completely blew this out.